Brevard teachers expected to vote on new contract

School board rejects special magistrate's ruling

By Ezzy Castro - Reporter

VIERA, Fla. - Hundreds of teachers in Brevard County will vote on a new contract Friday, and many of them are not happy with the deal.

The president of the Brevard Federations of Teachers said the average teacher pay on the Space Coast is among the lowest in the state.

"Brevard County teachers are the third-most experienced workforce in the state, and yet we are 30th in the average teacher pay in the state. We are $2,170 below the state average," Anthony Colucci said.

The union and school district have spent the past year battling over pay after a special magistrate ruled in favor of the union's request of up to $2,300. However, the school board voted against the recommendation, opting instead for raises up to $1,100.

"What teachers want is to be fairly compensated," Colucci said.

Things could change, however, after the school district said it miscalculated savings and identified an extra million and a half dollars, which could be used for raises starting next year.

"We still believe that the school board has an excess amount of money in their reserves. They believe they need to hang on to that for their worst-case scenario. We believe a piece of that can be used to pay for teachers," Colucci said.

The district also explained it wants to wait on using the extra money so it would not delay voting on the new contract. 

The results will be reported Tuesday at a school board meeting.
 

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